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batura Glacier 1

Batura Glacier Trek

Key Destinations

Islamabad-Besham-Chilas-Gilgit-Hunza
Karakoram Highway-Passu-Batura Glacier
Trip Summary

Daily Walking: 4-6 Hours

Max Altitude: 3,600 m /11,800 ft

Duration: 14 Days

Trekking: 7 Days

Trip Highlights

  • Second longest glacier in Pakistan
  • Opportunity to meet nomadic Wakhi people
  • Beautiful Hunza Valley and Atabad Lake
  • Karakoram Highway
  •  Views of Batura-7785m, Passu-7284m &Shishper Peak-7611m.

Trip Overview

Hunza, a remote mountain kingdom, may have been the inspiration behind James Hilton’s “Shangri-La.” The area opened up in the 1970s following the completion of the Karakoram Highway (KKH); an engineering marvel tracing the old silk route from Pakistan into China.

The fair skinned and light-eyed Hunzakuts claim to be descendants of soldiers lost from Alexander’s army as he invaded India. Their language, Burushaski, provides linguists an enigma as it is unrelated to any other language known to man.

The beauty of this mountain paradise is matchless; from the soft blossoms of the apricot trees to the dark snowcapped rock monuments of Rakaposhi (7788 m.) and recently climbed Ultar (7388 m.) jabbing a vivid blue backdrop high above.

We begin our journey with a plane flight from Islamabad to Gilgit. If weather does not permit the flight, we will travel via the famous KKH. From Gilgit we proceed over the Karakoram Highway to Karimabad (2440 m.), capital of Hunza. En route Rakaposhi appears with its sheer ice covered walls to awe passersby.

A short drive on the KKH takes us to Passu where we begin our trek on the Batura Glacier (63 km.). We spend about a week on the Batura; walking over rocks and sand laid between jagged peaks, through pine strewn hills with occasional wild roses, to high shepherd meadows with staggering views of the Batura massive and the largest ice fall in the world. The people in this area are of Persian/Turkish origin and speak a language with ties to Persia. The Wakhi people are very hospitable with bright pink cheeks topping a ready smile.

The last segment of this journey begins with our return to Passu or Gulmit village. After an overnight rest there, we drive on the KKH to Karimabad. An overnight stay in Karimabad and then on to Gilgit by means of the KKH.

The last leg of our trip takes us back to Islamabad by plane or road depending on the weather. The Hunza adventure is a grand introduction to the mountains of Pakistan. The traveler follows the most spectacular segment of the ancient silk route through an enchanting mountain kingdom to Pakistan’s border with China. The Batura Glacier provides a glacial excursion with less difficulty than either the Baltoro or Biafo-Hispar glacial traverse.

Holiday Itinerary

Day

1

Arrive Rawalpindi/Islamabad
Hotel, trek briefing. We will have ample time for sightseeing and shopping in colorful old bazaars of Rawalpindi and new markets of Islamabad. We may also drive to the huge modern Faisal Mosque in Islamabad.

Day

2

Gilgit (1,500 m 4,920 ft)
Hotel, flight. One of the most thrilling mountain flight in the world. We will fly in a Fokker Friendship turboprop plane which seats about 40 people. The plane flies at an altitude of about 4,500 m. in the Indus valley. It is surrounded by high peaks including Nanga Parbat (8,125 m.). In Gilgit we have time to shop and do some sightseeing.

Day

3

Pasu (2,400 m 7,870 ft)
Hotel, jeep. A short couple of hours drive up the KKH brings us to the village of Pasu. The view of Tupopdan needles towering above the Hunza river in Pasu is breathtaking. In the afternoon we have time to walk in the old village.

Day

4

Yunzben (2,700 m 8,860 ft)
Camp, trek. The Batura Glacier trek begins. It takes about 4 to 5 hours walking on dusty trails at the snout of the huge Batura Glacier. The Batura is even longer than the famous Baltoro Glacier in the K2 region.

Day

5

Yashpirt (3,100 m 10,170 ft)
Camp, trek. Today we diagonally cross the Batura Glacier. This is a tiresome day with lot of walking on rocks and the moraines of Batura. Yashpirt is a beautiful high meadow with many shepherd huts and fantastic views of the Batura peaks and the famous Batura ice fall across the glacier from us. We can also see Distaghil Sar (7,885 m.) from here. Distaghil Sar is the highest most western mountain in Trans-Himalayan and one has to go around the globe to come back to the eastern Himalaya to find such high peaks. Today’s walk takes about 6 to 8 hours.

Day

6

Guchashim (3,400 m 11,160 ft)
Camp, trek. This takes about 4 to 6 hours and involves crossing mountain streams. On the way we see families from Pasu with their yaks, sheep and cows in their summer homes. On our right is the ever present huge Batura massif wall.

Day

7

Guchashim (3,400 m 11,150 ft)
Camp, rest. We have ample time to wash, read and just explore the beautiful and awesome environment. Some go a little higher for a day hike to visit a side valley.

Day

8

Yashpirt (3,100 m 10,170 ft)
Camp, trek. Return to Yashpirt camp.

Day

9

Yunzben (2,700 m 8,860 ft)
Camp, trek. Return to Yunzben camp.

Day

10

Pasu (2,400 m 7,870 ft)
Hotel, trek. Return to Pasu for some rest.

Day

11

Karimabad (2,440 8,000 ft)
Hotel, jeep. Leaving early morning by jeep we proceed to the famous Khunjerab Pass (4,833 m.). After touching China at the highest paved border crossing in the world where the Pamirs meet the Karakoram we return to Karimabad on KKH. We arrive back in town in the late afternoon.

Day

12

Gilgit (1,500 m 4,920 ft)
Hotel, drive. We return to Gilgit and have ample opportunity to visit the Central Asian bazaars and do some sightseeing.

Day

13

Rawalpindi/Islamabad
Hotel, flight and trek debriefing. Here we go again and find ourselves looking forward to being on this world famous flight. One can never get enough of the sight of Nanga Parbat which is so huge that the plane takes about ten minutes to cross its northern face!

Day

14

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